After the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) minister, Nyesom Wike, issued a two-week ultimatum for ground rent payments, property owners have rushed to settle their debts, resulting in the recovery of N1 billion in one month.
The Abuja Geographic Information Systems (AGIS) office has witnessed a surge in activity as debtors of ground rents hurry to pay to avoid property revocation.
Isiaku Ndatsu Alfa, the acting director of AGIS, noted that ground rent collections were at their lowest between June and July. However, after the minister’s directive in August and the publication of debtors, earnings rose to N500 million and steadily increased to over N1 billion.
As of September 17, 2023, ground rents had generated precisely N1.9 billion, and this figure is expected to double by the end of the month.
AGIS plans to introduce an online payment portal for ground rents, certificates of occupancy (C of O), and other transactions to simplify the process and increase revenue collection. The online payment app has already been developed, with an official launch anticipated by the end of the year. This platform will enable people to pay from the comfort of their homes.
The director commended the FCT minister’s commitment to increasing Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) and emphasized the importance of property owners meeting their obligations regarding ground rent payments.
To accommodate the increased number of customers at AGIS, additional laptops and computer systems have been procured, and staff redeployment has been carried out.
The acting director of AGIS’s Department of Land Administration, FCTA, Jibril Adamu Husseini, supported the minister’s decision, stating that it was necessary to collect the over N34 billion debt and prevent breaches of allocation terms and conditions due to non-payment of ground rents.